Well day one down and most of us popped over to Alcatraz for an insight and historical perspective into the American penal system. The weather has really been kind to us today and it made for a really nice day. Later on, we went to see the sea lions at Pier 39 at Fisherman’s Wharf and do some junk shopping (I swear half of China’s souvenier output was here). I’ve uploaded my pics from the first day and we’ll upload lots more from students in due course. Alex came into her own by displaying amazing toy picking skills from the drop and snatch machine at the Pier. You can see them and their newly acquired Spongebob Squarepants doll in the pics. Spongebob was the controversial choice of tourism icon for the Cayman Islands a few years back but local groups protested because he was a gay icon and they feared the island would be swamped by gay men enticed by the advert. Just thought I’d throw that in. It was during this display of drop and snatch prowess that we were joined by a lovely lady who did get rather excited in the spirit of Japanese game shows. Sadly I didn’t film her initial jumping up and down but we did get her encounter with Greg which is in the album along with some other videos. You can view the Snatch video here and the full album here. Later on we went on the Cable car through Chinatown and on to Union Square where everyone (apart from miserable git me) got terribly excited by Abercrombie and Fitch and went on a purchasing binge By now, it was getting late and I pottered down Market Street to the United Nations Plaza and stunning City Hall (scene of the historic Milk shooting) which can be seen in the pics. More about this little journey in the next post.

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